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I can’t believe how much my writing retreat with True Elk changed my life. It far surpassed my expectations. I learned so much about myself, other people, and nature. I truly connected with myself and found myself. I learned who I’m supposed to be. For me, it was an experience that almost can’t be described in words. Writing with purpose and guidance in a setting of such incredible natural beauty, meeting people from all over the world who have similar goals and who offer such valuable input…it’s difficult to explain the magical impact True Elk had on me. I’ll definitely sign up again.

Robin Leonard (Writing our Relationships, June 2022)

True Elk was an exceptional experience.  It brought a group of women together from all over to write and share about their personal experiences/relationships under the gifted guidance of Christie Tate and the exceptional organization of Sarah Packford.  Being surrounded by the mountains was inspiring and provided the perfect backdrop for creativity and relaxation.  I highly recommend True Elk and am grateful to have been part of this workshop.

Chantel L. Carlson (Writing Our Relationships, June 2022)

Sarah gave us a fabulous experience in Banff. She made the whole week flow seamlessly with her careful attention to details. Her follow-up on any ideas, like compiling the group playlist, was much appreciated. Sarah has a natural ability to make participants feel welcome and included. I would come again in a heartbeat!

Lin Hermanson  (Writing Our Relationships, June 2022)

"I have never attended a writing workshop and was not sure what we would be doing. 

Sarah, the day was so well organized without feeling organized. The location was amazing, the walk around the lake served its purpose of building calm and trust, the workshop room was cozy, food was great and the participants willing and open.

Sonya was an excellent facilitator, grounding us initially and guiding us along the way with the readings, comments and probes. She was very personal with each individual and we all benefited from all of her feedback.  

I learned the power of a moving hand along a page, the release that comes with writing the words and the insight discovered on reading them back."

Senator Karen Sorensen

As a new writer hesitant to share my stories, I was blown away by the support, guidance and inspiration I received from "Writing the Personal". The workshop was welcoming and accessible- I felt like I belonged, even amongst experienced writers, and came away with a ton of useful tips and ideas to advance my writing practice. Not only did I learn a lot, but the experience was immediately cathartic for me. I experienced firsthand the value of body-based writing practice and sharing my personal narrative. It was a life-changing experience and I will definitely be attending another True Elk workshop.

Victoria Goodday  (Writing the Personal, Sept 2019)

"Sarah brings an elegant attention to details. Her planning and execution of True Elk events matches the grace with which she meets people in the moment. I've rarely met someone who has the genius of foresight to both vision and prepare for retreats, offering people a haven for their genuine selves to emerge."

Sonya Lea, Writer & Writing Mentor